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Nonprofit Overview

Causes: Animal Training, Animals, Centers to Support the Independence of Specific Populations, Health, Health Support, Human Services

Mission: Our mission is to transform lives with Service Dogs. TLCAD builds bridges to independence by transforming the lives of Wounded Warriors and individuals with autism in San Diego County, their families and their communities, as well as dogs at risk of euthanasia and the prison inmates who train them.

Results: Tender Loving Canines Assistance Dogs (TLCAD) is a nonprofit organization of dedicated service dog trainers for the autism and wounded warrior communities. For more than 15 years, TLCAD’s volunteer trainers have built bridges to independence for dozens of individuals in San Diego County. TLCAD is an Assistance Dogs International accredited organization that prepares dogs to meet the unique needs of each individual, which results in a 96% placement success rate. TLCAD partners with individuals, correctional facilities and dog rescue organizations to train service dogs to meet the growing demand in San Diego County.

Target demographics: individuals with disabilities

Direct beneficiaries per year: over 100 individuals with autism and Wounded Warriors by placing custom trained Service and Facility Dogs

Geographic areas served: San Diego County

Programs: At Ease and Leash-On-Life, that place custom trained Service Dogs with Wounded Warriors and individuals with autism.

Community Stories

31 Stories from Volunteers, Donors & Supporters

2 Jess22

Client Served

Rating: 5

My name is Jessica Hargis and I'm a medically retired Marine. I was stationed in the Wounded Warriors Battalion West as a paitent and thats where TLC saved my life. TLC is an amazing organization. They do not just give out a service dog by going down a list. They find the best match for every service dog they place. Every person I have ever met that works with them have been nothing but amazing, genuinely caring and would bend over backwards to do everything they can to help. My life was completely turned upside down from my medical disabilities. The first day I met with TLC I asked for the biggest scariest service dog to be paired with me. But they decided to try me with the sweetest smallest golden I had ever seen. I was relunctent but TLC was right with putting us together. The longer we trained together the more I saw a change in myself for the better. She was slowly giving me the ability to have my life back. I'm now able to leave my house! I can complete normal day to day functions! I do still have problems but at least I get to live my life how I want to live and its all thank's to TLC. My service dog Sasha and I are inseparable. She's my best friend and their really are no words to express how thankful I am for you guys pairing us together. All I can say is thank you TLC!!!

Charmaine H.

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

Karen,

Has been so supportive and amazing to work with - this is not an easy process and can be an long road to travel finding the best and most reputable k9 service organization. The compassion and kindness that has been extended to my family with 2 disabled twin son's has been so refreshing. I really appreciate all that Karen and her organization has provided me and my son's

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

TLCAD is an amazing organization that gives back to the San Diego community in many ways, not only by providing service dogs to individuals with disabilities but by helping to rehabilitate inmates and giving a second chance to shelter dogs. Their professionalism and dedication to best practice methods in training and placing service dogs helps to raise the standards of the field.

Rachel173

Client Served

Rating: 5

The mission of this group is amazing and simple--provide highly trained dogs to people in need to change their lives!! My son, Cameron is 9 years old. At 17 months of age he was diagnosed with Autism. Since that time he has been diagnosed with Apraxia which makes it almost impossible for him to speak. Cameron is currently severely impacted by his autism and pretty much nonverbal. He fortunately has children at school who care for him but he doesn't have any real friends. Cameron is also very active and is not afraid of cars. He could run into the street at any time. Our house is kept locked up tight just to keep him from escaping. If he left our constant supervision he could not survive. Our family divides up most of the time to attend activities because it isn't safe for Cameron. Movies, sporting events, parties,walks in crowded places or fairs, are next to impossible with Cameron. And then comes Star. Cameron was chosen to receive Star as his companion to allow him to do some of the things that have been unsafe for him up until now. She will also provide him companionship and hopefully encourage other children to be near Cameron. We are still in the process of training to be with Star but I know when she moves in with us it will be life changing for all of us! We are so grateful to Tender Loving Canines for this amazing gift!!

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

TLCAD is an invaluable organization which helps Veterans regain their independence, as well as helping to empower children with Autism. TLCAD has recognized the needs within its community, and strives to help those in their community to lead independent and happy lives, with the help of one of their specially, extended customized-trained service dogs. It is in this partnership where people can thrive in their daily lives. These service dogs have helped to save lives, as well as returning families to their family unit, helping to give people a big part of their world back, or introduce people to new experiences.

1

Advisor

Rating: 5

It was a pleasure working with the TLCAD team as we worked closely on the organization's rebrand efforts. The leadership takes their role in the community very seriously and is always looking for ways to extend their reach to have the most positive impact on individuals who would benefit from having an assistance dog. They truly are transforming lives.

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

They work great with us as a govt agency and their clients. Very professional and compassionate organization.

1 Linda387

Client Served

Rating: 5

I retired from the military after 20 years of service. I had difficulties after my deployment to Iraq. Willow, my service dog from TLCAD, helped me reintegrate back into society, helped me with my triggers, and improved my overall quality of life. I continue to serve by working with veterans with Willow by my side. Thank you TLCAD. Please support them.

2 Phillip G.

Donor

Rating: 5

I am the local chairperson for Tee it Up for the Troops and have been our charities internal champion for Tender Loving Canines. Karen and her team of talented trainers are simply one f the finest groups of people that I have ever been associated with and I am proud to be their representative within my organization.

At Tee it Up for the Troops our mission is to focus our fund raising efforts toward having an immediate and personal impact for veterans and their families at both the local and national level. Tender Loving Canines exactly meets that goal by providing service dogs that help our wounded military veterans cope with their wounds both seen and unseen. The dogs that they train and provide to our warriors help them manage daily issues that they face (mobility related issues as well as PTSD).

The training team takes great care to match dogs with veterans based upon their needs, but it doesn't stop once a dog is placed. TLC works with each veteran to understand how the dog can assist them and teaches each of them how to continue to re-emphasize the training that the dog has learned. When dogs grow to old to continue their work, TLC works closely with that veteran full the rest of their lives to make sure that their needs continue to be met.

Karen and the entire TLC team are simply the very best and I am lucky to have gotten to know each of them ad count them as friends.

1 dcornsweet

Donor

Rating: 5

Our foundation has been funding this org since our inception. in addition to providing service dogs, they also do a lot of consulting and training with other organizations. Wed efinitely are pleased with the "bang" we get for our buck.

Previous Stories
3

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

As a professional who has worked with PTSD for many years both in and out of the military, I've been deeply impressed with the work that TLCAD does with those who are or have served our country. The impact of the service dogs cannot be overstated as i have had the honor of talking with the recipients who shared their experiences and both heard and seen the profound difference.
As an investor in charitable organizations, i, along with the co trustee/director of the foundation i work with, carefully review each potential investee and their work. TLCAD has demonstrated fiscal responsibility, program efficacy and administrative excellence in a way that guarantees them to be an ongoing recipient of our support.